SDSU pharmacist helps patients and students fight opioid crisis

Nov 18, 2019

More health care providers in South Dakota are able to provide medication-assisted treatment for those fighting opioid addiction through a partnership between South Dakota State University and the South Dakota Department of Social Services and federal funding from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.
Credit South Dakota State University

A South Dakota State University assistant professor is using her resources to help aid in combating the opioid crisis.


Jenifer Ball teaches pharmacy practice at SDSU and is using a $200,000 grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration to help increase providers of medication assisted treatment against opioid addiction across the state.


Ball said that she’s optimistic that that more steps will be taken in the future to fight the crisis in South Dakota.


"I think it’s going to really reduce stigma and open up care to patients who may not have been able to feel comfortable accessing services before, and I think that’s really going to change things," Ball said. "That’s what I’m looking forward to the most, is just seeing some of the perspective on addiction change, and so far, within our residence and within our students, it’s definitely something we’re seeing.”

Jennifer Ball
Credit South Dakota State University

Ball said that it’s important for those providing medication-based treatment to have a connection with patients and have a better understanding of the struggles of addiction.  


Since the grant was received, the number of patients treated at the South Dakota Center for Family Medicine has grown from 46 to nearly 100.